We are all soldiers of destiny. We may not all represent the same ideological army nor the same virtues and ideas but we must all stand together in the war against injustice, indifference and empathy. This is the founding belief of the United Nations.
The war of our times is not only the one of guns and bullets – but a war of ideology – a war on extremism. Hatred and division must now be fought with unity and love.
You will all have your moment with destiny, ensure that you fight the good fight and that you are armed with the weapons of your voice, your knowledge, your soul and your belief in a stronger and more united humanity.
In you, rests tomorrows hope, indeed you are the future but you are also the present. In order to build a stronger tomorrow you must begin the work today – what you do here at the MUN is building the blocks that will be the foundation of a stronger tomorrow.
There will always be a battle against ignorance, do not lose that battle, do not lose hope, do not lose faith, do not lose your humanity.
Unless you were born before 1945, you aren’t old enough to remember the catastrophes that gave birth to the United Nations and the surge of idealism that defined its mission. The UN charter commits the organization to, among other things, “promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom,” to “reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small” and to “save succeeding generations from the scourge of war.”
We live in a world that is in desperate need of model diplomacy. Wars have been fought over diverse issues, our geo-political structure is changing and the world is slowly trying to catch up to these changes. If there is one thing that is evident in the course of human history, it is that war, pestilence and violence will never hold the answers to the questions we seek.
Instead, the world must look elsewhere for the answers to the questions of international diplomacy. The United Nations exists, to remind us that in the greater concept of the borders that we as humans have created, we as humanity are far smaller than what we think we are. International diplomacy, the missions for diplomatic peace and structure, are more important now than ever before.
The world has come to care more about the latest birth of the Kardashian clan and has forgotten the war in Syria, the economic downturn in Europe and the ever present environmental disasters we as man ignore. Our priorities are no longer about building a better world but instead about building our own social Medias.
Politically, I am not an interventionist. I believe that as our modern history continues, we will discover that the world shaped by the events following the September 11th 2001 attacks contains elements of interventionism gone wrong. The invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan can be directly linked to the rise of Al Qaeda and ISIS, an intervention that has created a far less stable world than it was two decades ago.
Fundamentally, we should examine our world according to diplomacy. You cannot deny that we as individuals share the most common core of our human dichotomy, we are part of a common biological subspecies that has spawned the planet and adapted to our surroundings over millions of years. Yet, what separates us from the birds of the sky and the fish of the sea, is our ability to build, create, write down and examine our own basic destinies. We speak different languages, hold various religious and cultural beliefs, but we are the same, we are identical, our human genetic code is the baseline for what makes us who we are and yet we see ourselves as being polar opposites. Never forget that freedom and power brings responsibility – as you grow older you may gain power, but remember to use that power to grow those around you and not only yourself. Do not become a leader that enriches themselves at the cost of the people he or she may serve. No leader anywhere in the world is entitled to anything except the trust of the people.
Too often in human history, we have looked at each other as being unequal, or naturally opposing. We have enslaved one another, waged wars against each other and we have committed crimes against each other so incredibly disturbing that they will forever be burned into our shared human history. It is only through international diplomacy and diplomatic efforts, that we will truly be able to create a more stable and prosperous world. When Jews and Arabs, Hutus and Tutsis, blacks and whites can come together at the table of brotherhood and talk to one another as equals, then we shall be able to build the basis of a truly strong and solidified international community.
One only needs to look at what is transpiring in the United States, Donald Trump is building a groundswell of support based on divisional tactics, creating a discourse of ‘us and them’ and ‘you and me’. This is not a new basis for politics, the idea of divide and rule has been with us for millennia, but we must not allow the seeds of division to grow within us. We should not be afraid of multi-culturalism. Think about this for a moment: countries and their borders are human creations. We invented the state for a specific reason. But when you remove the borders of the world, our planet seems so much smaller. When we remove our borders, we are able to better see a world that is not that different – we all want similar goals, to live in peace and comfortability.
I can assure you, that the young girl in Brussels, walking home from school has different worries to the young boy fleeing a war torn Syria but they share identical hopes and dreams, to live in a world that does not want to kill them, in a world where their governments care for education and health care and not chemical weapons or civil war. You cannot hope to build a better world without building the individual. What you are doing here at the model UN, is the perfect opportunity to build strong individuals who will then shape our future. We cannot change the past, we should not be expected to change it, our history is a painful one, it consists of war, division, slavery and destruction, our future is very different – but it can only be different if we begin today, building the hopes and dreams of our shared humanity.
In conclusion, it is up to you, the youth of this country, the youth of this world, to take up what you are doing and to further the goals and beliefs of the United Nations, to create a more stable world where men and women are equal under a global vision for peace and prosperity. My destiny, your destiny, our destiny is intertwined with one another and without each and every one of us, who share the idea of a united world, our destiny will be lost and in turn our humanity will be lost. You are soldiers of destiny – prepare yourselves for battle. Too many young folk have addiction to superficial things and not enough conviction for substantial things like justice, truth and love.
Change begins with you and it begins now. Tonight I see Presidents, Prime Ministers, Government and international leaders in all of you – and in all of you I see the shared hope of a brighter and stronger tomorrow. Have faith in yourself, in your fellow people and manifest your destiny.
Jared was was a Junior Ambassador to the UN and People to People International ambassador.
The awards ceremony for the Model United Nations is this Friday (27th May 2016) at 6.30 at Monash University